Recently, I’ve been in a weird place in my life. I have times when I feel like being in my 20s makes me too old to do some things, but too young for other things. Too old to bar hop and be in clubs every Friday, but too young to be in the house watching Real Housewives of Atlanta. Too young to be focusing on my retirement, but too old to not have a 401k and retirement plan. Too young to have children, but continually having my biological clock ticking in my head. Too young to be feeling unsuccessful, but too old to not be hustling towards my end goal.
Is it just me overthinking things or has the world put so much pressure on me to be successful, be a perfect wife and mother, and have all my shit together? I see memes that say “Your 20s are your selfish years”, but what does being selfish consist of? Does it mean living my life to the fullest without worrying about my future? Or using these years to set myself up for a prosperous future?
After reading Michelle Obama’s book, I realized that I am living a box checker life. Get good grades to get into college: Check. Graduate college with honors: Check. Get my masters degree: Check. Start my career immediately: Check. Get married: Check. I had a long list of things I wanted to check off: Buy a house, have children, and travel the world. However, after reading the book, I realized that I was checking things off a list. I wasn’t living or doing things that I loved. And that’s why I’m in a space where I no longer know where I want my life to go. Instead of checking boxes, I want to live my life to make me happy. I no longer want to live my life to be seen as what others deem as successful.
Our 20s are our years to do what we want. Don’t let society or social norms dictate your life. If you want to focus on setting your life up for retirement, do it. If you want to be a fantastic mother and wife and focus on your family, do it. If you want to spend your life traveling the world and eating Chick-fil-A, do it.
Stop checking off boxes and live your life the way you see fit. Setting goals are amazing but don’t focus so much on accomplishing those goals that when you look back on your life, you realize that you never really lived.